PitchSide From the Plex

PitchSide From the Plex

Talking soccer and all things sports. Focusing on youth and amateur sports, as well as the happenings at the Maryland SoccerPlex and Adventist HealthCare Fieldhouse. Hosted by Matt Libber and Kim Walter. Produced by Alexis Andrukat Price


February 16, 2022 75 mins

This week we tackle the very important and timely topic of abuse prevention in sport.  The US Center for SafeSport was founded through Federal legislation in the wake of the Larry Nassar scandal with USA Gymnastics.  Its mission is to act as the clearing house and adjudicator for abuse allegations within the Olympic movement sports within the US.  They also provide training and education for players, coaches, and parents on how to ...

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For todays celebration of Women In Sports Day, we take our second journey into CrossFit in this episode with Heather Lawrence-Benedict, their Director of Sport Operations.  Heather had a long career in college athletics going from operations and faciltiies, to Associate AD, and then to getting her PhD and teaching Sport Management to undergraduates and graduate students.  She jumped over to CrossFit just as the pandemic hit making ...

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January 18, 2022 82 mins

This week Kim and I get to welcome back to the SoccerPlex Washington Spirit Captain, NWSL Players Association President, and NWSL CHAMPION, Tori Huster.  Tori talks about her journey from youth soccer, to Florida State University, Australian A- League,  and all the way to this past November's NWSL Championship.  Tori gives us insight into the collective bargaining agreement negotiations, social justice causes, and the harassme...

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January 4, 2022 83 mins

This episode is a bit self serving as Matt just gets to hang out with his friends.  Matt and Kim are joined this week by Danielle Vincenti, Rachel Rogers, and Suzanne Cecil.  Each has served in several roles in the sports industry and are passionate advocates for sports tourism and professional development and advancement for women in sports.  They provide great life lesson from their personal journeys and some heart warming and fu...

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December 21, 2021 70 mins

This week Matt and Kim talk about the curious path that Casey Take took to get to become the Director of Athlete Development for Ironman.  Some would say she took a non-conventional path to work in endurance racing but she will talk about how that path provided the necessary tools to get where she is now.    Casey provides some great insight for young women starting out in the industry and advice that she wished she would have rece...

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December 7, 2021 72 mins

This week we speak with Jana Brooks, Manager Event and Tenant Services, Maryland Stadium Authority.  We talk through her journey from facility management at a law firm, to S.A.F.E, to dealing with both the Ravens and the Orioles at the Camden Yards Stadium Complex.  Jana has some fun stories about managing events, challenges, in the job, and why she loves it.  Jana also talks about one of the most rewarding things she has done, in ...

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Matt and Kim are back for a new season and will be focusing on Women in Sports.  In this season's first episode we are speaking with Andrea Travelstead, the Assistant Director for Youth and Development at USA Basketball.  We get to talk about her journey in sports which includes 2 college National Championships, one as a player and one as a coach, her time in Australia, and her move to USA Basketball.  Andrea give some great a...

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November 5, 2021 11 mins

Pitchside from the Plex is back.  This season Kim and Matt are focusing on Women in Sports.  We will host a series of female guests to talk about their journey in sports, challenges they have faced, what can make women better suited to work in sports, and provide advice for young women looking to get started in the sports industry.  We will talk with college ADs, representatives from various sports organizations such as USA Basketb...

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Kim and Matt sit down with Jason Clement the CEO and Founding Partner of The Sports Facilities Companies.  We discuss what goes into developing new sports facilities, why communities are looking to add sports venues, and why youth sports are so important to a healthy community.  Jason talks about the holistic benefits to children from sports in terms of physical, mental, and spiritual well being.  We also discuss the economics of s...

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April 6, 2021 50 mins

Kim and Matt sit down with Wilson Pak, the Director of the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge.  Wilson explains the concept of CrossFit and what competitive CrossFit looks like.  We explore the challenges presented by COVID to the industry.  Wilson also talk about the Mid-Atlantic CrossFit Challenge which is moving to Knoxville Tennessee this year as well as the NOBULL CrossFit Games in Madison Wisconsin. 

Presented by

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March 23, 2021 84 mins

Matt and Kim speak with Skye Eddy, mom, coach, and former player, who founded the Soccer Parenting Association.  Skye provides resources for coaches and parents to help provide a better playing environment to youth soccer players.  She speaks about problems we see on the sidelines from parents, coaches, and players.  Skye talks about how to identify issues and how to address them to make soccer fun again for your kids.


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This week Kim and Matt broaden our horizons and learn about the Gaelic Athletic Association.  Brittany Walsh the Mid-Atlantic Division GAA Chairperson joins us to teach us about Gaelic Football, Hurling, and Camogie.  If you have every had a chance to watch any of these games played they are fast paced and high scoring affairs.  They are simply exciting to watch.  Brittany taches us about the games themselves, the history of GAA in...

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February 23, 2021 83 mins

This week Matt and Kim speak with the last three Head of Grounds and Environmental Management of the Maryland SoccerPlex, who have all go off to higher profile gigs.  Our most recent Dir. of Grounds, Mitch Litz recently left to take over as Director of Grounds at FC Cincinnati in the MLS.  He is joined by his predecessor,  Ryan Bjorn, Superintendent of Fields for the New England Patriots and New England Revolution  and Jerad Minnic...

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February 9, 2021 72 mins

Matt and Kim speak with Matt Robinette, President of Capital Rugby Union and Events Director for National Collegiate Rugby about the growth of rugby in the US pre-pandemic and the devastating toll the pandemic has had on the game.  Matt Robinette breaks down the different levels of the game, various governing bodies, and what the future holds for the sport.

Capital Rugby Union

National Colle...

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January 26, 2021 63 mins

In this episode we speak with Bethany Henderson the SEO of DC Scores and the President of the America Scores Network as well as Tom Gross the League Administrator for DC Scores.   America Scores is a program founded in Washington DC that combines poetry and service learning with the game of soccer.  The program aims to provide meaningful physical and educational activities and coaching to children in areas where access to sports is...

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This week we Matt and Kim speak with John David, Chief Strategy Officer for USA BMX.  John talks about how he got involved in the sport and how it continues to grow.    John talks about the different levels of racing from Age 5 to 65.  We also talk about the importance of Sports Tourism and how BMX fits into both an economic and community asset.  Lastly he talks about the positive impact COVID has had on BMX membership and how they...

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This week we Matt and Kim speak with Ryan Defibaugh, owner and counselor from MBS Performance Counseling.  We discuss the mental aspects of sports on children, the effects of COVID on mental health, and the stigma around mental health.  Ryan provides tips and discussion points to have a conversation with children about maintaining good mental health as well as the importance of working on the mental aspect of sports not just the ph...

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In this episode we are joined by Montgomery County Councilmember Gabe Albornoz. Gabe discusses the importance of youth sports as a whole and how we can reach out to underserved communities with youth sports. Gabe discusses specific legislation that has been implemented here in Montgomery County, Maryland, the Youth Sports Initiative, that is aimed to provide team sport activities to places within the county that have historically b...

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November 14, 2020 96 mins

This week we broadcast live from the Bethesda Premier Cup, an all-girls soccer tournament hosted at the Maryland SoccerPlex and operated by Bethesda Soccer Club (www.premiercuptournament.com).  We sit down with Brad Roos the Tournament Director to talk about the effort that went in to host a tournament during a pandemic. We also talk with Kelly Groff, President and CEO of Visit Montgomery (www.visitmontgomery.com), to discuss the e...

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This week, we talk with Terry Hasseltine, the Executive Director of the Maryland Sports Commission.  Terry talks about the role of the Sports Commission in sports tourism for Maryland and importance of the youth sports as part of economic development.  Terry also heads up the Baltimore 2026 Local Organizing Committee for the FIFA World Cup.  Terry discusses the different pieces that go into the bid, how the process works, and why i...

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